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Doctor of Ministry

Christian Spirituality Cohort

Decisions Sent February 21, 2025


The study of Christian spirituality shouldn't be a sanitized endeavor, cut off from life and ministry. Instead, it must be integrated with daily life, engaging with everything we encounter and experience. Therefore, the first three years of the cohort in Christian Spirituality will dive deep, not just into the history of mystics and monastics, but also into the spirituality of nature, family, film, and fiction. Along with exemplary co-teachers, Tony Jones will lead this cohort through the legacy of great spiritual classics, into the quiet woods of Northern Minnesota, and into the fast-moving scene of LA film and television. By studying where we can find God in these diverse environments, students will be equipped as better Christian leaders. And more importantly, students will have myriad opportunities to connect with God and renew their own spiritual lives.

Cohort Overview

Christian Spirituality Cohort

Year One

Themes: Theology of Christian Spirituality; History of Christian Spirituality (16 units)

Spring 2025 Reading/Seminar (6 units):
Mar 31-Jun 12. In-Person Seminar: May 19-23, (Retreat Center Local to Pasadena, CA)
Summer 2025 Doctoral Project Research (4 units):
Jun 23-Sep 5 (4 units, Online)
Fall 2025 Writing Course (6 units):
Sep 29-Dec 12 (6 units, online)

The concentration of our first gathering is to frame up the entire three-year experience, developing a broad and robust understanding of just what is “Christian Spirituality.” Pastors and ministry leaders often neglect their own souls as they nobly minister to those in their care. Herein, students will learn not only the content of the rich history of Christian spirituality, but also consider how this spirituality can become enmeshed in their own theologies of ministry, and, finally, to be applied in their own lives and ministries. Students will develop a personal “theology of Christian spirituality” which will guide them throughout the course of study.

Year Two

Spirituality and Creation (16 units)

Spring 2026 Reading/Seminar (6-units):
Mar 30-Jun 12. In-Person Seminar: June 1-5, (BCWA, MN)
Summer 2026 Doctoral Project Research (4-units):
Jun 22-Sep 4 (Online)
Fall 2026 Writing Course (6 units):
Sep 28-Dec 11 (Online)

In the second year, we will meet in Boundary Waters, Minnesota and explore the connection between Christian spirituality and nature, including forays into the north woods and waterways of the Boundary Water Area Canoe Wilderness, with a special emphasis on Jürgen Moltmann’s theology of creation. Students will be challenged spiritually, intellectually, and physically to connect their ministry lives to the broader creation, and to the Creator.
Other Resources: Brad Shannon and Adventurous Christian Outfitters

Year Three

Spirituality & Culture; Spirituality & Film
(16 units)

Spring 2027 Reading/Seminar (6 units):
Mar 29-Jun 11. In-Person Seminar: May 17-21 (Pasadena, CA)
Summer 2027 Doctoral Project Research (6 units):
Jun 21-Sep 3 (Online)
Fall 2027 Writing Course (4 units):
Sep 27-Dec 10 (Online)

The nexus of Christian spirituality and our everyday lives will be the focus of the third year, with Tony Jones teaching on cultural hermeneutics and challenging the students to take their theology of Christian spirituality—developed in year one—and apply it to the world in which we find ourselves. Ryan Parker, Ph.D. in theology and film, has worked in Hollywood for over a decade will be screening films with us and catalyzing theological reflection.
Other Resources: Craig Detweiler; Barry Taylor; Rob Johnston

Tony Jones


Tony Jones

Tony Jones is the author of Did God Kill Jesus? (HarperOne, 2015) and contributing writer to several periodicals. He’s written a dozen books, including The New Christians: Dispatches from the Emergent Frontier and The Sacred Way: Spiritual Practices for Everyday Life, developed the iPhone app, co-hosts the Killer Serials Podcast, and teaches at Fuller Theological Seminary. Tony is a sought after speaker and consultant in the areas of emerging church, postmodernism, and Christian spirituality, writing, and the outdoors. He served as a consultant on the television show, The Path, and he owns an event planning company, Crucible Creative. He holds an A.B. from Dartmouth College, an M.Div. from Fuller Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. from Princeton Theological Seminary. Tony is married, has three children, and lives in Edina, Minnesota

(626) 584-5315